How the Supreme Court case on sports betting is related to marijuana legalization

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Summary

Federal judges agreed with the NCAA that the state law could not stand because it violated the federal law. WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court appeared poised Monday to legalize sports betting nationwide by freeing states from a federal anti-gaming law. Once again, the NCAA and the pro sports leagues sued and won in federal court. The federal law did not actually ban sports wagering, but instead said states may not “authorize by law” such gaming. The 1992 federal law included an exception for Nevada which allowed it to continue licensing betting on sports.

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WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court appeared poised Monday to legalize sports betting nationwide by freeing states from a federal anti-gaming law.

The justices gave a friendly hearing to New Jersey’s claim that states are free to control their own laws, including in the area of gambling, unless Congress has adopted a federal regulatory policy to prohibit it.

And Congress failed to do that when it passed a 1992 law, the state maintained. The federal law did not actually ban sports wagering, but instead said states may not “authorize by law” such gaming.

That type of command from Washington violates the Constitution’s 10th Amendment, which reserves to the states the power to make and enforce their own laws in areas where the federal government has not exerted authority, said former Solicitor General Ted Olson, representing New Jersey.

Related: Outgoing N.J. Gov. Christie calls marijuana taxes “blood money”

“This is a direct command...

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